The Way You Meet a Man: Why It Matters

With so much energy focused on meeting the love of your life, not a lot of attention is paid to the way you hook up. If you meet at the office or through friends or online dating, does it make a difference? Does it affect the odds you'll stay together? According to any number of relationship experts, how you meet does make a difference, and it can definitely influence your odds of staying together. Here, you'll learn the best ways to find your match. But first, meet three couples who met in drastically different ways (from the ordinary to the offbeat) and discover why it worked for them.

Genna & Danny: Blind Date Duo

The encounter
Two minutes after Max met Genna in March 2003, he announced, "I have got to fix you up with my fraternity brother Danny." Max was the new boyfriend of Genna's friend Allyson. Immediately, Allyson seconded the motion: "My God, why didn't I think of that? They're so much alike. The two of them would be perfect for each other."

A dinner party was arranged at Max's house, the two were introduced and voila! A love connection was made. Genna, director of corporate communications for a toy company in Los Angeles, says, "Max and Allyson both feel ‑- and Danny and I agree ‑- that we owe them forever."

The outcome
Genna strongly believes that the way she and her fiance met was the key to their success. "Being fixed up, immediately there is more investment than had we met, say, at a bar or online. People who know you and care about you have selected a potential soul mate." The couple, both 31, made it a point not to email or IM one another for several months. "We thought keeping our communication face-to-face or phone-line-to-phone-line would keep things more personal," says Genna.

The potential hurdle to meeting through friends, of course, is that those well-meaning pals could have gotten too involved in the budding relationship. That's why Genna and Danny didn't use their buddies ‑- not even once ‑- as go-betweens. "Danny asked me out the first night. I was really impressed that he didn't wait to get the scoop from Max the day after the dinner party, but went for it," says Genna. "Max and Allyson have worked hard not to put too much pressure on us. They were like gentle cheerleaders, quietly inquiring how things were going."

And things are going just fine, thank you. The pair got engaged in December 2004. Guess who will be honored guests at their wedding.

The analysis
A lot of the magic here was created by Max and Allyson's laissez-faire approach to Genna and Danny's budding relationship. Once they were fixed up, Genna and Danny made a point not to get their matchmaker friends involved in their romance. And according to psychotherapist Tina Tessina, PhD, coauthor of How to Be a Couple and Still Be Free, their idea to ditch electronic correspondence early on was also an important factor. Since they already knew there was an attraction, sticking to talking on the phone and in person gave them a chance to develop what Tessina calls the "infrastructure" of a relationship: a communication style and process. She feels this was especially important for these two because they didn't want to disappoint their pals.
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